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Technical Paper

Fuel Reforming and Catalyst Deactivation Investigated in Real Exhaust Environment

Increased in-cylinder hydrogen levels have been shown to improve burn durations, combustion stability, HC emissions and knock resistance which can directly translate into enhanced engine efficiency. External fuel reformation can also be used to increase the hydrogen yield. During the High-Efficiency, Dilute Gasoline Engine (HEDGE) consortium at Southwest Research Institute (SwRI), the potential of increased hydrogen production in a dedicated-exhaust gas recirculation (D-EGR) engine was evaluated exploiting the water gas shift (WGS) and steam reformation (SR) reactions. It was found that neither approach could produce sustained hydrogen enrichment in a real exhaust environment, even while utilizing a lean-rich switching regeneration strategy. Platinum group metal (PGM) and Ni WGS catalysts were tested with a focus on hydrogen production and catalyst durability.
Technical Paper

Achieving Fast Catalyst Light-Off from a Heavy-Duty Stoichiometric Natural Gas Engine Capable of 0.02 g/bhp-hr NOX Emissions

Recently conducted work has been funded by the California Air Resources Board (CARB) to explore the feasibility of achieving 0.02 g/bhp-hr NOX emissions for heavy-duty on-road engines. In addition to NOX emissions, greenhouse gas (GHG), CO2 and methane emissions regulations from heavy-duty engines are also becoming more stringent. To achieve low cold-start NOX and methane emissions, the exhaust aftertreatment must be brought up to temperature quickly while keeping proper air-fuel ratio control; however, a balance between catalyst light-off and fuel penalty must be addressed to meet future CO2 emissions regulations. This paper details the work executed to improve catalyst light-off for a natural gas engine with a close-coupled and an underfloor three-way-catalyst while meeting an FTP NOX emission target of 0.02 g/bhp-hr and minimizing any fuel penalty.
Technical Paper

Effect of Micro-Hole Nozzle on Diesel Spray and Combustion

The influence of nozzle geometry on spray and combustion of diesel continues to be a topic of great research interest. One area of promise, injector nozzles with micro-holes (i.e. down to 30 μm), still need further investigation. Reduction of nozzle orifice diameter and increased fuel injection pressure typically promotes air entrainment near-nozzle during start of injection. This leads to better premixing and consequently leaner combustion, hence lowering the formation of soot. Advances in numerical simulation have made it possible to study the effect of different nozzle diameters on the spray and combustion in great detail. In this study, a baseline model was developed for investigating the spray and combustion of diesel fuel at the Spray A condition (nozzle diameter of 90 μm) from the Engine Combustion Network (ECN) community.
Journal Article

Methanol Fuel Testing on Port Fuel Injected Internal-Only EGR, HPL-EGR and D-EGR® Engine Configurations

The primary focus of this investigation was to determine the hydrogen reformation, efficiency and knock mitigation benefits of methanol-fueled Dedicated EGR (D-EGR®) operation, when compared to other EGR types. A 2.0 L turbocharged port fuel injected engine was operated with internal EGR, high-pressure loop (HPL) EGR and D-EGR configurations. The internal, HPL-EGR, and D-EGR configurations were operated on neat methanol to demonstrate the relative benefit of D-EGR over other EGR types. The D-EGR configuration was also tested on high octane gasoline to highlight the differences to methanol. An additional sub-task of the work was to investigate the combustion response of these configurations. Methanol did not increase its H2 yield for a given D-EGR cylinder equivalence ratio, even though the H:C ratio of methanol is over twice typical gasoline.
Technical Paper

Achieving 0.02 g/bhp-hr NOx Emissions from a Heavy-Duty Stoichiometric Natural Gas Engine Equipped with Three-Way Catalyst

It is projected that even when the entire on-road fleet of heavy-duty vehicles operating in California is compliant with 2010 emission standards of 0.20 g/bhp-hr, the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) requirements for ambient ozone will not be met. It is expected that further reductions in NOX emissions from the heavy-duty fleet will be required to achieve compliance with the ambient ozone requirement. To study the feasibility of further reductions, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) funded a research program to demonstrate the potential to reach 0.02 g/bhp-hr NOX emissions. This paper details the work executed to achieve this goal on the heavy-duty Federal Test Procedure (FTP) with a heavy-duty natural gas engine equipped with a three-way catalyst. A Cummins ISX-12G natural gas engine was modified and coupled with an advanced catalyst system.
Technical Paper

The Impact of Engine Operating Conditions on Reformate Production in a D-EGR Engine

Dedicated EGR has shown promise for achieving high efficiency with low emissions [1]. For the present study, a 4-cylinder turbocharged GDI engine which was modified to a D-EGR configuration was used to investigate the impact of valve phasing and different injection strategies on the reformate production in the dedicated cylinder. Various levels of positive valve overlap were used in conjunction with different approaches for dedicated cylinder over fueling using PFI and DI fuel systems. Three speed-load combinations were studied, 2000 rpm 4 bar IMEPg, 2000 rpm 12 bar IMEPg, and 4000 rpm 12 bar IMEPg. The primary investigation was conducted to map out the dedicated cylinders' performance at the operating limits of intake and exhaust cam phasing. In this case, the limits were defined as conditions that yielded either no reformate benefit or led to instability in the dedicated cylinder.
Technical Paper

Impact of Swirl Ratio on Combustion Performance of a Non-Pent Roof Combustion Chamber Engine

In response to the sensitivity to diesel aftertreatment costs in the medium duty market, a John Deere 4045 was converted to burn gasoline with high levels of EGR. This presented some unique challenges not seen in light duty gasoline engines as the flat head and diesel adapted ports do not provide optimum in-cylinder turbulence. As the bore size increases, there is more opportunity for knock or incomplete combustion to occur. Also, the high dilution used to reduce knock slows the burn rates. In order to speed up the burn rates, various levels of swirl were investigated. A four valve head with different levels of port masking showed that increasing the swirl ratio decreased the combustion duration, but ultimately ran into high pumping work required to generate the desired swirl. A two valve head was used to overcome the breathing issue seen in the four valve head with port masking.
Journal Article

Advanced Ignition Systems Evaluations for High-Dilution SI Engines

A series of ignition systems were evaluated for their suitability for high-EGR SI engine applications. Testing was performed in a constant-volume combustion chamber and in a single-cylinder research engine, with EGR rates of up to 40% evaluated. All of the evaluated systems were able to initiate combustion at a simulated 20% EGR level, but not all of the resulting combustion rates were adequate for stable engine operation. High energy spark discharge systems were better, and could ignite a flame at up to 40% simulated EGR, though again the combustion rates were slow relative to that required for stable engine performance. The most effective systems for stable combustion at high EGR rates were systems which created a large effective flame kernel and/or a long kernel lifetime, such as a torch-style prechamber spark plug or a corona discharge igniter.
Technical Paper

Effects of Catalyst Formulation on Vehicle Emissions With Respect to Gasoline Fuel Sulfur Level

Proposed emissions standards will require that emissions control systems function at extremely high efficiency. Recently, studies have shown that elevated gasoline fuel sulfur levels (GFSL) can impair catalytic converter efficiency. In this study, a variety of tri-metal catalysts were evaluated to determine if formulation changes could reduce emissions sensitivity to GFSL. Catalysts with elemental composition similar to an OEM, but with double the precious metal (PM) loading, were evaluated using 38 and 620 ppm GFSL. Doubling the PM loading significantly reduced catalyst sensitivity to sulfur. Doubling the rhodium loading, at the expense of the platinum loading, significantly improved NOx emission sulfur sensitivity.